Radeon R520

Radeon R520

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Radeon R520

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Description:
ATI's "R520" core (codenamed Fudo) is the foundation for a line of DirectX 9.0c and OpenGL 2.0 3D accelerator X1000 video cards. It is ATI's first major architectural overhaul since the "R300" core and is highly optimized for Shader Model 3.0. The Radeon X1000 series using the core was introduced on October 5, 2005, and competed primarily against nVidia's GeForce 7000 series. ATI released the successor to the R500 series with the R600 series on May 14, 2007. ATI does not provide official support for any X1000 series cards for Windows 7.

Architecture

The R520 core architecture is referred to by ATI as an "Ultra Threaded Dispatch Processor". This refers to ATI's plan to boost the efficiency of their core, instead of going with a brute force increase in the number of processing units. A central pixel shader "dispatch unit" breaks shaders down into threads (batches) of 16 pixels (4×4) and can track and distribute up to 128 threads per pixel "quad" (4 pipelines each). When one of the shader quads becomes idle, due to a completion of a task or waiting for other data, the dispatch engine will assign the quad with another task to do in the meantime, with the overall result being a greater utilization of the shader units, theoretically. With such a large number of threads per...
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